Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Building the Buzz: Day 8 Local Media

One week down. So far, we've concentrated on building the foundation and getting your affairs in order. Now it's time to take this show on the road.

Think Local
Have you ever been fishing? You can use worms, crickets, crawdads, all sorts of little bugs as bait. But if you want to catch the really big fish, you use little fish, minnows. You can buy minnows, but they're pretty easy to catch: a modified pop bottle and some bread will do it.

Getting big media works the same way. The big fish pay attention if you've got lots of little fish swimming around. A five minute spot on your small town morning news show probably won't sell a bunch of books. But you aren't planning to fry up and eat the minnows. You use them (I'm talking about the local show here, stick with me) to catch a bigger show, maybe the next biggest city in your county.

Don't overlook your local media outlets because they aren't big enough. They can help you reel in the big fish. So for today's task, break out the yellow pages or hit the internet. Your mission is to find every local media outlet you can.

Start with the obvious ones like a local tv stations, radio stations, newspaper, magazines. Then branch out into the smaller outlets. Head to the grocery store and check out all those free flyers and 5 page papers available by the door. Stop by your towns welcome center and see if there are other publications there. You might also find luck asking one of the front desk folks for help. They know a lot about where you live. The library can be a great resource as well. Look at special interest groups, too. Think large civic organization like Lions or Knights of Columbus or family and mom targeted publications.

Not all of these groups are going to work for you, but don't start screening them until you've got a list as big as you can get it. You never know when seeing a name on the list jogs your brain to think of another outlet. Make sure as you're building your list that you are collecting contact names and info as well. You need to know the right person to reach out to.


  1. I'm sick so I've done nothing but drink theraflu, but this is on my list!

  2. I've noticed a lot of local writers have gotten a lot of help with this if they make good connections with indie bookstores.

  3. These are very good ideas. I think some creativity is called for when searching for media outlets. :-)

  4. I heard at a conference two weeks ago (Backspace) that you can't contact them directly. Do you pose as a publicist before you contact them!? Or just call them as yourself?

    1. I can't speak for whoever you got that advice from, but I don't agree at all. There is nothing wrong with contacting media directly. Now, if you have a publicist that you are working with at your publisher, then do work with them first. If not, there is nothing stopping you from contacting the media. Average Joe does it every day.


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